MASKING THE SELF
I've always been interested in the way we mask ourselves, in every sense of the word, as well as the reasons behind this masking. Make-up and costume fascinate me, as do the more subtle masks that can occur in speech and behavior. I find that masks often work against the wearer; in many cases one can see even more clearly what a person is trying to hide. The man in this photograph, upon hearing that I was doing a project on masks, tentatively suggested that I come and photograph his. I agreed; when I arrived at his house, he put on this wrap, confessing to have been a terrorist of sorts in his younger days, an episode in his life he'd been trying to get past for some time. He said he used to wear this mask so he couldn't be identified. I was completely shocked: this person is now a yuppie accountant with horned rimmed glasses and a pet poodle. I'd known him for years and never knew about his life before he came to the U.S. Although it chilled me to photograph him in that get-up, I was touched at his apprehension, his worry about what my reaction would be once I knew his "dirty secret". I was very much intrigued that the mask, supposedly meant for concealing, revealed so much about a person I thought I already knew.
This is my first page, and a trial one at that...who knows if it will even work? Mail me with any questions!
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